The Drivers

Daniel Ricciardo

Daniel Ricciardo

Winner of Laureus World Sports Award for Breakthrough of the Year, 2015

Born in Perth in 1989, Ricciardo started karting aged just nine after finding a hero in Ayrton Senna. After working his way through the go-kart ranks, in 2005 he entered the Australian Formula Ford series and, although driving an uncompetitive car, made enough of an impression to secure a scholarship for the following season’s Formula BMW Asia championship.Claiming two wins and 10 podiums in his debut Formula BMW campaign with the Eurasia team, Ricciardo made an instant impression and finished third in the championship. He also enjoyed an outing in the British Formula BMW series, taking three points from two races, and another outing at the end-of-year World Finals, where he finished fifth.

Already a signed-up member of the Red Bull junior team, Ricciardo progressed to the prestigious British Formula Three championship in 2009 and set about proving that his Formula Renault success wasn’t a one off. Six poles and six wins later - and with two rounds still to run - he won his second championship in as many years.

In the build-up to July’s British Grand Prix it was announced he was to make his F1 race debut with Spanish team HRT, who had signed a collaborative deal with Red Bull to support Ricciardo’s ‘formation and development’ ahead of a potential future race seat with one of Red Bull’s own teams. That team turned out to be Toro Rosso, who signed him for 2012 after some strong showings for HRT alongside former STR racer Vitantonio Liuzzi.

While Sebastian Vettel struggled to get to grips with 2014’s new generation of hybrid machinery, his new team mate made the transition with ease. By the season’s end he had established himself as the new de facto number one at Red Bull, and with Vettel subsequently defecting to Ferrari, Ricciardo becomes their real team leader for 2015.

Max Emilian Verstappen

Max Emilian Verstappen

After just one - extremely successful - season in single-seaters, Max Verstappen’s rise has been unprecedented .Red Bull shocked the Formula One paddock by placing him with Toro Rosso for 2015. Never has one so young, so inexperienced, lined up on an F1 grid.

Max Emilian Verstappen was born in Hasselt, in the east of Belgium, on September 30, 1997. Motorsport was in his blood: father Jos was competing in Formula One racing at the time - in fact he competed for Tyrrell in Japan 10 days after Max’s arrival - while mother Sophie Kumpen was a successful, and extremely quick, kart driver.

At the age of 4, Max received his first kart, he graduated into single seater the next year. He earned the attention of a number of F1 teams, among them Red Bull.

The latest milestone of his meteoric rise was confirmed as Red Bull placed him with Toro Rosso in 2015.

Can Verstappen prove his worth and became a match for Red Bull number one Daniel Ricciardo? Whatever happens, it's sure to be exciting...